AMC Networks’ Sundance Now
Acquires U.S. Rights to
Tim Minchin’s Critically Acclaimed Drama Series
UPRIGHT from eOne
“Four stars. Addictively good” –The Guardian
“Four Stars. Heart as big as the desert it crosses” –Sydney Morning Herald
“Unmissable drama packs heart and soul and devastating twists.” –Express
“Writing that is reminiscent of Phoebe Waller-Bridge scripts…
Upright is one of the year’s best.” –Arts Hub
“With the irreverence of Fleabag, the colourful beating heart of Parks and Rec and the backdrop of Breaking Bad” -Metro
“Favorite show since Fleabag. I don’t say that lightly… God this cast is good… Time commitment small. Reward huge.” -Writer/Director Joss Whedon
New York, NY; June 10, 2020 – AMC Networks’ streaming service Sundance Now acquires U.S. rights to the universally adored Australian eight-part drama series UPRIGHTfrom international distributor Entertainment One (eOne). Produced by Lingo Pictures (Lambs of God, The Secrets She Keeps), the new drama series is co-written, composed by and stars internationally renowned Australian actor, comedian, and musician Tim Minchin. UPRIGHT follows a shabby musician (Minchin) who has to drive across Australia with nothing but a piano, and finds his baggage soon increases when a runaway girl comes into his life. Following its hugely successful and critically acclaimed premieres in Australia and the U.K., UPRIGHT will make its U.S. Premiere in a special screening and Q&A with Minchin with the ATX Television Festival in mid-July and begin its exclusive U.S. premiere on Sundance Now on Thursday, August 6, 2020 with the first two episodes.
Star, composer, executive producer and co-writer Tim Minchin, said, “I’m so excited that our show has made it to the US, and thrilled that it has landed at Sundance Now. The reactions to UPRIGHT in the UK and Australia have been like nothing I’ve ever experienced, and I can’t wait for Americans to see it. It’s quintessentially Aussie and, at the same time, utterly universal. And I’m pretty sure it’ll make you really laugh and properly cry, which – for me – is always the goal.”
Shannon Cooper, VP of Programming, Sundance Now, said, “With its brilliant mix of humor and heart, plus a spectacular setting and mesmerizing performances by Tim Minchin and Milly Alcock, UPRIGHT has all the elements to become a favorite of Sundance Now subscribers. We’re thrilled to work with Tim Minchin and eOne to bring this beloved Australian series to U.S. audiences.”
“We are thrilled for US viewers to see this gem of a series that has captured the attention of audiences and critics around the world,” said Noel Hedges, eOne’s EVP of Acquisitions, International Distribution. “Upright is an emotional and layered journey that is a perfect fit for Sundance Now and its audience.”
Producer, Lingo Pictures’ Jason Stephens, said: “I’m immensely proud of UPRIGHT and how it resonates with an audience. This is a very special drama that stays with you way beyond the last frame.”
When family outcast Lucky Flynn (Minchin) learns that his mother is dying, he decides to drive to the other side of Australia to see her, packing nothing but an upright piano for the journey. But his plans are soon turned upside-down when he meets runaway teenager Meg (Milly Alcock, 2018 Rising Star Award, Casting Guild of Australia), who’s dealing with some family demons of her own. Together, they forge an unlikely friendship, as they embark on a road trip adventure across the Nullarbor Plains in a race against time. Along the way, they encounter feral camels, a magical pink lake, highway thieves, cliff-top parties, a speed-loving truckie, an underworld fight ring, suspicious cops and the world’s most musically appreciative motorcycle gang. Over eight hot days, Lucky and Meg drive, hitch and scam their way across the scorching desert continent – with the upright piano never leaving their side – on a journey that will ultimately make them both feel more at peace with everything in life that they’ve been kicking against.
UPRIGHT is a Lingo Pictures production for Foxtel and Sky UK, with major production investment from Foxtel, Sky UK, and Screen Australia in association with the South Australian Film Corporation plus financed with support from Create NSW and Screenwest. The deal was brokered by Rosanna Canonigo, Director, US, International Distribution, eOne, which handles international television rights.
Besides Minchin, the stellar creative team behind UPRIGHT includes Chris Taylor (satirical comedy group The Chaser) and award-winning writer-actors Kate Mulvany (Fighting Season) and Leon Ford (Offspring, No Activity). The director is Matthew Saville (Please Like Me). Minchin has also written the music for the series and is Executive Producer with Penny Win and Helen Bowden. UPRIGHT is produced by Jason Stephens from Lingo Pictures with Melissa Kelly (Hounds of Love) and Chris Taylor also as producers.
Streaming service Sundance Now offers a rich selection of original and exclusive series from engrossing true crime to heart-stopping dramas and fiercely intelligent thrillers from around the world, all streaming commercial-free. Coming up, Sundance Now features the exclusive premiere of critically acclaimed French spy drama The Bureau, Season 5 (Thurs., June 18). The streaming service can be enjoyed on most streaming devices for only $6.99/month or $4.99/month (plus tax) with an annual membership. No cable subscription is needed.
Press Contact: Sundance Now, Chad Campbell, email@example.com
About AMC Networks
Known for its ground-breaking and celebrated original content, AMC Networks (NASDAQ:AMCX) is the company behind the award-winning brands AMC, BBC AMERICA, IFC, SundanceTV, WE tv, and IFC Films. Its diverse line-up of popular and critically-acclaimed series and independent films include Killing Eve, Better Call Saul and The Walking Dead, which has been the #1 show on basic cable television for ten consecutive years, as well as Documentary Now!, Brockmire, Love After Lockup, and the films Boyhood, Death of Stalin, and many more. Its original series Mad Men and Breaking Bad are widely recognized as being among the most influential and acclaimed shows in the history of TV. The Company also operates AMC Studios, its production business; AMC Networks International, its international programming business; the subscription streaming services Acorn TV, Shudder, Sundance Now; and UMC (Urban Movie Channel); RLJE Films; and Levity Entertainment Group, the Company’s production services and comedy venues business. For more information, visit http://www.amcnetworks.com.
Entertainment One Ltd. (eOne) is a talent-driven independent studio that specializes in the development, acquisition, production, financing, distribution and sales of entertainment content. As part of global play and entertainment company Hasbro (NASDAQ: HAS), eOne’s expertise spans across film, television and music production and sales; family programming, merchandising and licensing; digital content; and live entertainment. Through its extensive reach and scale, and a deep commitment to high-quality entertainment, eOne unlocks the power and value of creativity.
eOne brings to market both original and existing content, sourcing IP from Hasbro’s portfolio of 1500+ brands, and through a diversified network of creative partners and eOne companies including: international feature film distribution company Sierra/Affinity; Amblin Partners with DreamWorks Studios, Participant Media, and Reliance Entertainment; Makeready with Brad Weston; unscripted television production companies Renegade 83, Daisybeck, Blackfin and Whizz Kid Entertainment; live entertainment leaders Round Room Live; world-class music companies Audio Network, Dualtone Music Group and Last Gang; and award-winning emerging content and technology studio Secret Location.